When the Day of Pentecost was fully come, the disciples of Jesus Christ were all with one accord in one place.
1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in
2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as the roar of a rushing mighty
wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
It sounded to them like a tornado
going through the house and tearing it apart.
3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and
it sat upon each of them.
It was not fire; but it looked like
fire to them. We are unable to perceive God’s Holy Spirit with any of our 5
senses – so God provided some bold physical manifestations for their benefit.
4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak with other
languages, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Almost two thousand years later we
observe this holy convocation in the same manner – without the great sights and
sounds of the original Pentecost – but God’ Spirit is present – none the less.
Because we have been privileged to
know of the Plan of God shown in His Holy Days, we understand that
Pentecost pictures God’s Holy Spirit being bestowed on the called out saints.
The Church of God came into
existence as each individual person received God’s Holy Spirit and became a
child of God.
They were all changed – now led by
God’s Holy Spirit. Look at the change that took place in Peter. He was a
pretty obnoxious and boisterous fellow before conversion. He was insufferable
and rowdy. Jesus had to say to Peter, “Get you behind me satan” – because Peter
was not entreatable. Peter denied Jesus three times while Jesus was going
through His passion.
Read Acts two to see the change that
came over Peter when he received God’s Holy Spirit and became converted.
14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them,
Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you,
and hearken to my words:
16 But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel.
17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my
Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your
young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.
All these things occurred on the
Feast of Pentecost – and we need to take note of the things that have happened
in the past on Pentecost Days because God’s Holy Days are “sign posts” in the
Plan of God.
18 And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my
Spirit; and they shall prophesy:
And Peter preached a great sermon…
38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name
of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the
39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off,
even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves
from this untoward generation.
41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there
were added unto them about three thousand souls.
It wasn’t that Peter gave such a
powerful sermon – it was the Will of God and the workings of His Holy Spirit.
So we see that the Church of God began to grow mightily – and it did. In our
day – many of us have seen the Church numbers swell greatly.
But, let me ask you this: Why? Why
did God send His Holy Spirit? What is the purpose of all these Church
brethren? How does this fit into the Plan of God? How does the Feast of
Pentecost fit into the Plan of God?
Early in the work of Herbert W.
Armstrong the church had two great gatherings every year. They met for the
Spring Holy Days and they came together – as we do today – for the Fall holy
Today we will begin to look at
Pentecost as the “Feast of the Church.” That is my title of this sermon
today – because I want us to understand the importance of this central – in the
Plan of God - pivotal Feast around which the Feast days revolve.
The Feast of Tabernacles is the
great ingathering harvest of the world, but the Feast of Weeks – Pentecost – is
the Feast of the Church.
16 And [speaking of Pentecost] the feast of harvest, the firstfruits
of thy labors, which thou hast sown in the field: and [then speaking of the
Feast of Tabernacles] the feast of ingathering, which is in the end of
the year, when thou hast gathered in thy labors out of the field.
As God’s Church has grown in
understanding, the details of Pentecost have become clearer to us as Jesus said
Jesus said that the Comforter which
is the Holy Spirit would teach us all things, and bring all things to our
remembrance (John 14:26).
With God’s help, there is no end to
learning the truths contained in the Bible. The Bible is a gold mine of
Spiritual Truth – we are not able in a life-time to see all the wonderful truth
God has placed at our fingertips.
There are ways to dig the truth out
of the Bible. Psalm 111 gives us one technique for finding God’s truth.
10 The reverence of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have
all they that keep His Commandments: His praise endures forever.
If we do not live Christian lives
with all our might and with the help of God’s Holy Spirit – we will not
understand God’s Word. The more we put the Scriptures together in Faith – the
more we are able to see and understand of the Plan of God.
I believe that one of the greatest
gifts God gave to Herbert W. Armstrong was the knowledge of the Holy Days – and
how they subsequently reveal the step-by-step Plan of God. Mr. Armstrong and
His wife Loma did not understand the Plan of God when they first began to
observe the Holy Days. No! Not at all!
At first, they kept the Feasts of
the Lord as best they could – out of obedience to God. Slowly – but
surely – they began to understand the timing, the analogies, the types and the
symbolism that the Holy Scriptures incorporate.
The Feast of Passover led them to
better understand Repentance.
Unleavened Bread taught them to come
out of sin – a type and figure of Egypt. All the Holy Days reveal the
Truth of God that the world is blind to.
11 And [Jesus quoting Isaiah 6:9] said unto them, Unto you it is given to know
the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these
things are done in parables.
12 That seeing they may
see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at
any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them.
Brethren, unto you it is given to
know the mystery of the Kingdom of God.
Let’s take into account the
knowledge, the types, the allegories, the timing, and the symbolism that we have
come to understand in order to increase our comprehension of the overall picture
and meaning of the Feast of Pentecost.
Let’s put all the Scriptures
together – a little here – a little there – precept upon precept (Isaiah 28:10).
Do we realize that God has never
done this with a people before – create them into His Children. We are a
9 You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a special
select people; that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath
called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
Out of the multiple billions on
people on earth, God is sharing His Truth with us that His Holy Name be
magnified. We are privileged and blessed to have been called to be the
firstfruits of God’s spiritual creation – being made unto His image – even
eventually unto His spiritual eternal life.
At this time we are a work in
progress – not yet complete – not yet like Him as He is (1 John 3:2).
26 And God said, Let us make man in Our image, after our likeness.
Some people say, “God looks just
like us – nose, eyes, ears, etc. That is backward – that is making God like us
– not us like God.
1 John 3:
2 Beloved, now [already] are we the sons of God, and it does not yet
appear what we shall be: [a change to spirit beings needs to take place] but we
know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him;[not Him like us – but we
shall be like Him] for we shall see Him as He is.
We will see God – not with
physical eyes – but with spiritual eyes of understanding and godly
wisdom… Seeing His Justice, His Mercy, His Faithfulness, His Compassion, and
It is about understanding the heart,
mind, attitude, and Spirit of God. We shall be like Him – and a great
change yet needs to take place in us – and that is what the Feast of Pentecost
This process of our spiritual
development is shown by Pentecost and the events surrounding Pentecost – up to
the final Pentecost before Christ Returns.
Let’s look at some of the Scriptural
points that we have come to know so that we might better understand the
ramifications of the Feast of Pentecost within the Plan of God.
The Sabbath Day, at the end of the
week, is the beginning of our spiritual creation.
1 Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.
The entire physical creation
was complete – and yet something was missing.
2 And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on
the seventh day from all his work which he had made.
God is the author of the “week”
which the entire world utilizes. The sun gives us the day. The moon
gives us the month. The stars gives us the year. But God gave mankind
the week. The week is not found in nature. Why did God give mankind the
3 And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it:[set it apart and made
it holy] because that in it He had rested from all His work which God created
The very first thing God did in
bringing many sons and daughters to Glory – was to begin the spiritual
creation for mankind.
**Pentecost – as we shall see –
pictures the completion of the Spiritual Creation when we, the
Children of God, become full-fledged members of the Spiritual, Eternal
Family of God.
When we shall be like
Him; When we shall see Him as He is.
27 And he said unto them, The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the
Our being Spiritually created will
not be complete until we are spiritual beings in the eternal family of God.
5 Jesus answered Nicodemus, Truly, truly, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of
water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God.
6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit
Brethren, when will the process of
our being spiritually created be complete? The Scriptures spell it all out – if
we will have the eyes to see and the ears to hear.
6 Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you
will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.
Notice that: “He which hath begun a
good work in you.” God has called us and given us a token of His Spirit. And
we are assured that He will completely perform that process of our Spiritual
creation in the day of Jesus Christ. That – as we shall see – will be on
that final Pentecost before Jesus returns to this earth.
Great and wonderful events occur on
God’s Holy Days.
Jesus Christ is the first of the
firstfruits. The fact that He is “First” indicates clearly that there
will be more firstfruits.
1 Corinthians 15:
23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward [more
firstfruits] they that are Christ's at His coming.
“At His coming” – there is the
timing once again. The saints are also firstfruits to God and to the Lamb.
18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind
of firstfruits of His creation.
4 These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These
are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goes. These were redeemed from
among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.
The Wave Sheaf and Pentecost
are connected by the counting of “seven” weeks. None of the other Feasts
of God are connected by counting – they are fixed dates on God’s Sacred
9 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying…
The Children of Israel have recently
been delivered from Egyptian bondage. But God gives them instructions and
knowledge that they are not to implement UNTIL they come into the Promised
10 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come
into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye
shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest.
We have learned that this “sheaf of
the firstfruits” represents the resurrected Jesus Christ. Brethren, are we wise
enough to utilize the timing, the analogies, the types and the
symbolism that the Holy Scriptures incorporate – in order to comprehend the
deeper meanings that God has for us? This “sheaf of the firstfruits” represents
the resurrected Jesus Christ.
11 And he [the priest] shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted for
you: on the morrow after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it.
12 And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf an he lamb without
blemish of the first year for a burnt offering unto the Lord.
The resurrected Jesus Christ was the
first of the firstfruits offering during the Days of Unleavened Bread.
13 And the meal offering thereof shall be two tenth deals of fine flour mingled
with oil,[Oil represents God’s Holy Spirit] an offering made by fire unto
the LORD for a sweet savor: and the drink offering thereof shall be of wine, the
fourth part of an hin.
The early spring harvest could not
begin until this ritual had been accomplished.
This ceremony shows us in type
that Jesus is the beginning of the spiritual harvest – He is the firstfruits of
the spiritual harvest.
14 And ye shall eat neither bread, nor parched corn, nor green ears, until the
selfsame day that ye have brought an offering unto your God: it shall be a
statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.
Next – as we continue here – we will
see something remarkable. We will see how Pentecost – our Feast – is perfectly
connected to Jesus Christ the Wave Sheaf offering. The number “seven” pictures
spiritual perfection in the Scriptures.
15 And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the Sabbath, from the day that
ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven Sabbaths (weeks ending with the
Sabbath) shall be complete.
Today – the day before Pentecost –
is day number 49. [Seven times seven].
16 Even unto the morrow after the seventh Sabbath shall ye number fifty
days; [That is where the Greeks get the name Pentecost] and ye shall offer a new
meat offering unto the Lord.
After seven complete weeks (seven
weeks of seven days) from the Wave Sheaf day we come to Pentecost, the fiftieth
day. That is this evening at sunset. Pentecost begins this evening. Today
will complete the bracketed seven weeks – that is what this is all
about. Bracketed between the Sabbath prior to the Wave Sheaf and the Day of
These seven weeks picture a complete
and perfect TIME for spiritual completion. When the seven weeks are fulfilled –
it is Pentecost. Yes, it is the fiftieth day – but it comes at the completion
of the seven times seven weeks.
9 Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from
such time as thou begin to put the sickle to the corn.
22 And thou shalt observe the Feast of Weeks, [Feast of Pentecost] of the
firstfruits of wheat harvest, and the Feast of Ingathering [Feast of
Tabernacles] at the year's end.
Let’s continue in Leviticus – where
we have come to the Day of Pentecost – and we will see much more symbolism here.
17 Ye shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth
deals: they shall be of fine flour; they shall be baked with leaven; they
are the firstfruits unto the Lord.
The two wave loaves – that is
us, brethren. The two wave loaves of fine flour represent the
firstfruits to God of the harvest. Remember, Jesus Christ – the First of
the first fruits has been presented 50 days prior to this – and yet, we too are
considered by God to be of His firstfruits… they are the firstfruits unto the
These two loaves represent those who
will be in the first resurrection from the Old Testament and those who
will be in the first resurrection from the New Testament. Brethren, who
is our High Priest today? Jesus Christ, correct? Let’s keep this question in
mind as we come to a better understanding of what these verses were
prophesying for us.
20 And the priest [Jesus Christ is our High Priest today] shall wave them
[Just as Jesus was waved – presented to the Father] with the bread of the
firstfruits [that is us – the Church brethren] for a wave offering before
the LORD, with the two lambs: they shall be holy to the LORD for the priest.
While we are laying this Scriptural
foundation for the Feast of Pentecost – let’s take a look at some of the other
occurrences that took place in conjunction with Pentecost in the Old Testament.
We are told to study the Bible in this manner. Paul put it this way:
1 Corinthians 10:
11 Now all these things happened unto them [the folks in the Old Testament] for
examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the
world are come.
We have long been taught that God
gave the Ten Commandments from Mount Sinai on the Feast of Pentecost.
How did we know that? Well – again
big things happen on God’s appointed Feast Days. That is why the beloved
apostle John used the holy Days in the public ministry of Jesus Christ for his
gospel outline. He simply followed Jesus’ life from one Holy Day to the next.
The Scriptures give us the timing of
the Old Testament marriage covenant and the giving of the Law of God on
Pentecost after the Children of Israel left Egyptian bondage.
1 In the third month, when the children of Israel were gone forth out of
the land of Egypt, the same day came they into the wilderness of Sinai.
These timing points are important to
us – but not to the world. Jesus said:
40 He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see
with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should
Passover was in the middle of the
first month. There are two weeks in the first month - then four weeks
in the second month as we come to the third month - six weeks have passed…
2 For they were departed from Rephidim, and were come to the desert of Sinai, and
had pitched in the wilderness; and there Israel camped before the mount. [mount
3 And Moses went up unto God, and the Lord called unto him out of the mountain,
saying, Thus shalt thou say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of
It would be a good study – but I
think that Moses made the climb up mount Sinai at least six times – and
the Bible does not tell us exactly how long it took him. Could Moses go up and
down twice in the same day – the Scriptures don’t tell us. But we have to be
getting close to six and a half weeks… We can figure it out because we
have the Holy Days to guide us.
4 Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles' wings,
and brought you unto myself.
Eagles' wings are not to be
understood literally – are they? The Israelites did not actually fly on eagles'
wings – but they had God’s protection and guidance as He delivered them.
5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye
shall be a very special treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is
6 And ye shall be unto me
a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt
speak unto the children of Israel.
7 And Moses came and
called for the elders of the people, and laid before their faces all these words
which the LORD commanded him.
8 And all the people answered together, and said, All that the LORD hath spoken
we will do. And Moses returned the words of the people unto the Lord.
This is preparatory to the marriage
covenant – Israel is agreeing to enter into a covenant with God where again they
will say “I do.”
9 And the LORD said unto Moses, Lo, I come unto thee in a thick cloud, that the
people may hear when I speak with thee, and believe thee for ever. And Moses
told the words of the people unto the Lord.
10 And the LORD said unto Moses, Go unto the people, and sanctify them today and
tomorrow, and let them wash their clothes.
At this point in Exodus we are only
three days out from the Day of Pentecost.
11 And be ready against
the third day: for the third day the LORD will come down in the sight of
all the people upon mount Sinai.
16 And it came to pass
on the third day in the morning, that there were thunders and
lightning’s, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet
exceeding loud; so that all the people that was in the camp trembled.
Notice that the trumpet was
exceeding loud. We will see that point mentioned again – because that is a very
important Trumpet. These words of God are not superfluous. They are there so
we can put God’s Plan all together and understand it.
17 And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet with God; and
they stood at the nether part of the mount
18 And mount Sinai was altogether on a smoke, because the LORD descended upon it in
fire: and the smoke thereof ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole
mount quaked greatly.
19 And when the voice of the trumpet sounded long, and waxed louder and
louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him by a voice.
And then in Exodus we find the
giving of the Law of God on Pentecost – the Ten Commandments that tell us how to
live Godly lives with Godly love. Jesus, quoting Deuteronomy 8:3 said:
4 … It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that
proceeds out of the mouth of God.
12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.
14 For we know that the law is spiritual.
The Old Testament marriage
covenant took place in conjunction with the Feast of Pentecost.
1 And [the Lord] said unto Moses, Come up unto the LORD, thou, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel; and worship ye afar off.
2 And Moses alone shall come near the LORD: [Remember, Moses is a type of the Messiah] but they shall not come nigh; neither shall the people go up with him.
* 3 And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the LORD hath said “we will do.”
That is what you say when you enter into a Marriage Covenant. We will see that this Marriage Covenant is fully ratified in just a moment. And again, this Marriage Covenant is taking place in conjunction with all the other events of Pentecost.
4 And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and
built an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve
tribes of Israel.
5 And he sent young men of the children of Israel, which offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace offerings of oxen unto the Lord.
They are “cutting a covenant in blood” – none of the terms or conditions can be changed.
6 And Moses took half of the blood, and put it in basins; and half of the blood he
sprinkled on the altar.
7 And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the
people: and they said, All that the LORD hath said will we do, and
There it is – the Marriage Covenant of the Old Covenant is endorsed, ratified and signed off on. The blood sealed the Marriage Covenant with God.
8 And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the LORD hath made with you concerning all these words.
Next, God is going to reveal an incredible thing that took place on Pentecost. It is a picture and a prophecy of the ultimate Marriage Supper that is going to take place – also on a future Pentecost.
9 Then went up Moses, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of
10 And they saw the God of Israel: [All I can say is Wow!] and there was
under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the
body of heaven in his clearness.
There is the God of Israel – Jesus
Christ – and at His feet a “Paved work.” The Hebrew renders this by implication
to be transparent flooring. It was as clear as the sky on a brilliant day – and
yet it was tinted as a sapphire stone.
Jesus is too brilliant to look upon
with human eyes. God had to provide a way that the elders could look up through
this “tinted glass shield” to be able to look at Him and not be blinded. Let’s
look at that in Revelation 1 – but hold your place here in Exodus 24 – because
we will come back her and finish up Part 1 of this Pentecost sermon “Feast of
Some you know that I used to have a
welding shop. Welders use a helmet with a dark shield for viewing their work.
The shield is needed to protect the eyes from the 5,000 to 6,000 degree electric
arc that is melting the steel. I cannot tell you how brilliant steel is at that
temperature – it is just like the surface of the sun in brightness.
When the arc is first struck – or
when it is broken at the end of a pass – the temperatures can easily approach
10,000 degrees for a split second – but it is enough to cause blisters on the
eyes of a careless worker nearby. God has a spirit formed shield from to
protect the elders from His brilliance. These verses are speaking of the
resurrected Glorified Jesus Christ.
13 And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed
with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.
14 His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were
as a flame of fire.
15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace;[there
is your molten metal analogy] and his voice as the sound of many waters.
*Back to Exodus 24 where I want to
ask you the question, “Why does God give us this narration of an event that took
place on the Pentecost of the Marriage Covenant?
11 And upon the nobles of the children of Israel he laid not his hand: also they
saw God, and did eat and drink.
That is a type of the marriage
supper at God’s throne that will take place on the final Pentecost before the
return of Jesus Christ.
Tomorrow is Pentecost and we will
have Part 2 of “Feast of the Church.”
End: “Feast of the Church” Part 1
||"Feast of the Church - Part 1"
||"Feast of the Church - Part 2"